Kent Co. Health Dept.: XO Asian Cuisine can reopen

Grand Rapids restaurant shut down last week for health code violations

XO Asian Cuisine, Grand Rapids
XO Asian Cuisine on Monroe Center in downtown Grand Rapids. (April 24, 2016)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — XO Asian Cuisine, a popular Grand Rapids restaurant that was shut down because of health code violations, has been cleared to reopen, the Kent County Health Department said Thursday.

“It’s very clean in there. It looks very good in there. And they would appear, on the surface, to be ready to get back about the business of being in the restaurant business,” health department spokesman Steve Kelso said.

The restaurant on Monroe Center downtown could open its doors to customers as early as Friday, though its management will make the decision about whether that will actually happen.

The health department shut down XO last week for at least seven days after it failed to fix about 30 Michigan Food Law violations within 40 days. Those violations included food stored at the wrong temperature, repeat evidence of rodents, and food stored under sewer lines and under a leaking ceiling, among other things.

>>RELATED: XO Asian Cuisine health violations report

An official who has been with the health department for more than 20 years told 24 Hour News 8 earlier this week that he couldn’t remember ever shutting down a restaurant for so long.

Sunday, one of XO’s owners admitted to 24 Hour News 8 that mistakes had been made and promised that management was working to correct them.

The restaurant was inspected again Thursday, according to a release from the health department, and sanitarians found that the necessary changes had been made for it to reopen.

“We are encouraged by the progress that has been made, however, this action did not give us an opportunity to observe a working restaurant. Today we could only see the operations readiness to serve the public,” Supervising Sanitarian Max Bjorkman said in a Thursday statement. “We will continue to monitor XO’s progress once the restaurant reopens.”

XO was fined pay $6,000 because of the violations.

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